Sweet Chestnuts

ABC Wednesday

Today is the nutty season in Crete. Perhaps we are all nuts for living in such a beautiful island, but I would live nowhere else. But now nuts are the thing. The lovely chestnut trees are disgorging their wonderful nut for us all to go and pick up.

The nuts are wonderful, they appear in October just before we light our fires where the nuts can be cooked perfectly. Luckily I know of a wonderful gorge in Crete where the nuts are just perfect. A day or two ago I went to get the nuts and very soon they will be roasted on our woodburning stove. Here is what they look like on the tree.

Chestnuts on the tree

Chestnuts on the tree

Then they burst open and fall to the ground, they are everywhere under the tree and as you gather them they fall on your head and all around you.

Chestnut trees in my secret valley

Chestnut trees in my secret valley

Here you can see the trees with the fallen chestnuts in our wonderful sunlit valley.

Fallen chestnuts on the ground

Fallen chestnuts on the ground

Here are the fallen chestnuts. Mostly they are ejected from their prickly shells but a few remain and with care they can soon be taken out of the shells. One thing that you must watch for are the tiny moth caterpillars that eat these nuts. They bore a tiny hole on the case of the nuts and eat the inside. Just test the nut for the tiny holes and if they are OK, then they are fine.

19 thoughts on “Sweet Chestnuts

  1. So nice to see the inside story of the nuts. You are a real gatherer. Sounds like good fun.
    I remember buying hot roasted chestnuts at a Swiss market. In my inside jacket pocket they would stay warm and keep me warm on the cold walk home.
    They taste good too.

  2. Reminds me of the song ‘Chestnuts roasting on an open fire’, but on Crete. I never would have thought these nuts grow there.

  3. i love chestnuts, and the trees at this time of the year look spectacular
    glad to hear you spoke to the old blind man – he’s really quite interesting to talk to you if you have the time to speak to him, not at all nosey, except in that normal greek way (who are you, whats your name, where are you from, do you know so-and-so), and he has a lot of wisdom to offer to people who are willing to spend a little time with him

  4. I am sorry to tell that many trees has got a desease and it is spreading more and more. The result is dead trees.
    I have a good friend in Strovles and there they have big problems.
    Even in my country, Sweden, this desease has begun spreading. Very bad and very sad.
    Kriti stin kardia mou

  5. I used to collect wild chestnuts in the woods when I was a child, and just eat them raw. Too many would upset the stomach, but we still did it!

    I love the second picture. Nice diagonal there!

  6. Ray..thank you for visiting my nature post. You live in a beautiful place. I was wondering if you have any squirrel type animals that take the nuts…The chestnuts make me think of a cold winter day eating the nuts from a vendor’s cart in New York City..but getting off the tree would be much more fun..

  7. I remember being in Paris in the dim and distant past, when I wasw young! It was in October. My mum and I were walking somewhere in the Quartier Latin, when we saw a chestnut vendor, where we could buy roasted chestnuts. They were still hot and tasted lovely. Your chestnuts look very tempting too! Nice post.

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